Short Story: The Carnival Was Eaten, All Except the Clown


by Caroline M. Yoachim

candyclown-300wCaroline M. Yoachim lives in Seattle and loves cold cloudy weather. She is the author of dozens of short stories, appearing in Fantasy & Science Fiction, Clarkesworld, Asimov’s, and Lightspeed, among others. For more about Caroline, check out her website at


The magician’s table was covered by a sheet of plywood, four feet square, completely wrapped up in aluminum foil. Sugar magic was messy magic, and the foil made for easier cleanup. Scattered across the aluminum were misshapen chunks of candy, the seeds from which the carnival would grow. And grow it did.

Overnight, as the magician slept, sugar melted into candy sheets that billowed up into brightly colored tents. Caramel stretched itself into tightropes and nets, and green gumdrop bushes popped up to line the paths between the tents.

The carnival glittered with sugar-glass lights. The Ferris wheel was made of chocolate with graham cracker seats and a motor that ran on corn syrup. Out near the edge of the table, a milk chocolate monkey rode bareback on a white chocolate zebra with dark chocolate stripes. The monkey did handstands and backflips while the zebra pranced in a slow circle.



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